Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Great Presidents

I had intended to post this yesterday, in recognition of President's Day, but time got away from me.

I love U.S. History and enjoy reading about and discussing the Presidents we have had in our history and considering their place in history and significance to the country. I have a few lists I want to share reflecting my opinions about our Presidents. I have tried to be objective and invite others to share their thoughts and lists.

List #1: The Presidents with the Greatest Signicance to the Country in terms of impact and legacy in the context of contemporary American society (regardless of whether or not I'm a "fan")

1. George Washington (he is after all the "Father of our Country" . . . plus, can you imagine if John Adams was the first president?)

2. Abraham Lincoln (can you imagine the Civil War and its aftermath with any other President at the helm?)

3. Franklin Roosevelt (no, I am not a fan, but who else has had a greater impact on modern society . . . after all who else can we credit more for our "Welfare State"?)

4. Ronald Reagan (he brought an end to the Cold War and ushered in the greatest era of material prosperity our country has ever known . . . and, yes, I am a FAN)

5. Theodore Roosevelt (he ushered us into the "modern world" and began to build our legacy as the world's superpower)

List #2: Our Most Under-Rated Presidents

1. George W. Bush (just wait 20-30 years and see how he is viewed)

2. George H. W. Bush (had he been elected to a second term, I think the world would have been a much different place, and many of the problems in the Middle East would not be as difficult as they are now)

3. Harry Truman (although, during the past decade he has begun to get his due . . . and, yes, this Republican is a fan)

4. James Garfield (okay, I can't really think of any significant accomplishments, but I like him because of our shared heritage)

5. Richard Nixon (yes, his behavior at times was shameful, but the earlier part of his presidency was filled with some noteworthy achievements; plus, he gave a few good men their starts in government)

List #3: Those Who Would Have Made Great Presidents, But Never Were

1. Alexander Hamilton (if he'd only had a "softer side')

2. Newt Gingrich (there's still time with this one)

3. Margaret Thatcher (oh, of course, Britian had her first)

4. Admiral "Bull" Halsey (I've got to think that anyone nicknamed "Bull" would make a great president . . . plus my dad sailed on the ship that bore his name)

5. Sam Houston (he did great for Texas, surely he could run the United States!)

List #4: Those Who I Hope Will Be President One Day

1. Newt Gingrich (is there a more intelligent man in America? . . . imagine the debates!!!)

1a. John McCain (I am not his biggest fan, and in a Republican primary, my vote would have gone to another . . . but do we really have another choice at this point?)

2. George P. Bush (I haven't lost hope in the Bush dynasty)

3. J. D. Watts (Vice-President in 2008?!!!)

4. Carly Fiorna (she ran Hewlett Packard . . . I've bought 20 or so of their printers)

5. Harrison Ford (okay, I wouldn't like his politics . . . but he just has that look)